Plum + Spilt Milk

Bronze Award

SquareMeal Review of Plum + Spilt Milk

Bronze Award

Referencing the carmine and white livery of the Flying Scotsman’s first-class dining carriages, Plum + Spilt Milk occupies the upper floor of the swankily refurbished Great Northern Hotel. While not blessed with the grand assets of the nearby Gilbert Scott, the dining room nonetheless oozes down-to-earth class with its brown-leather banquettes and gold-rimmed tables on gleaming parquet floors. The menu, meanwhile, is a please-all selection of modern classics. To start, the Cornish fish soup has real depth, or you could try smoked haddock under glazed hollandaise concealing a soft-poached egg. Blushing pink lamb chops with crisp sweetbreads and courgette is a sound main course, but skip the namesake dessert for a ruinously rich chocolate mousse with cherries and honeycomb. Service veers from engaged to distant, while keenly chosen wines offer better value than a train buffet car.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
Food Occasions
Group dining [8+]

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Location for Plum + Spilt Milk

Great Northern Hotel, Pancras Road, King’s Cross, King's Cross, London, N1C 4TB

020 3388 0818


Opening Times

Mon-Sat 7am-11pm (Sat 8am- ) Sun 8am-10pm

Reviews of Plum + Spilt Milk

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8 Reviews 

Lisa S

21 August 2019   - Verified Diner
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5
Lovely restaurant

I had taken my client here to this restaurant for breakfast as it's his favourite - will definitely come here again

Nicole P

10 October 2017  
Food & Drink 4.5
Service 5
Atmosphere 3
Value 4
A more formal food meeting venue
Although I have only been here twice, my boss comes here often. He mainly has breakfast meetings here and I have also been lucky enough to have the breakfast here. It is slightly more formal than some of the other restaurants around Kings Cross however, it is needed so it serves a purpose. There is a great range for breakfast depending on how hungry you are but I can say that the Eggs Royale are amazing! I would love to have them again soon. As a side note, the bar downstairs at the Great Northern Hotel also makes amazing cocktails and is a great venue to meet at before a long train journey.

Paul B

15 July 2015  
Food & Drink 3.5
Service 2.5
Atmosphere 4
Value 2.5
The location proves to be a haven in the midst of a mele of bustling travellers and poisonous streets outside. The conversion is a WONDERFUL legacy and the boutique Great Northern Hotel is to be praised to the heights for its sympatico restoration. Staff are a mixed crew. What appeared to be the duty manager wandered around in drainpipes and a jacket that look like it had shrunk fatally in the wash. But our african waiter was fine. Service was variable. By 2.30pm there seemed to only one young waitress in the whole dining room and getting a bill was an irritating delay in somewhere so pretentious. The fayre was not much to my taste. The fishes were tarted up with juxtapositions. Whilst I enjoyed my crab and avocado on toast and my partner raved about the devilled kidneys, the welsh rarebit I had was both dull and too much. Booze prices are HEAVY. A lovely light room and I noted a preponderance of ladies at lunchtime - a good sign. Punching above its weight at those prices and room for improvement both in service and refined cuisine.

Timothy P

18 November 2014  
Food & Drink 4.5
Service 3.5
Atmosphere 3.5
Value 3.5
Fine food, atmosphere and location.
This restaurant was recommended to us (a group of 4), and I'm surprised it hasn't been reviewed more! Upstairs from a raucous GNH bar (it was a Friday night at 7pm though), we had a drink at the small cocktail bar prior to sitting down; cocktails were popular, as was the glass of NZ sauvignon blanc I ordered. Service was a bit slow to get going, but upon ordering we received fresh roast onion bread to tide us over till the starters. The spicy lamb's kidneys on toast (which I never eat at home) were a highlight, and the 2 dressed crab plates went down well. Main courses were lamb cutlets, venison, and sea trout, plus sides of cauliflower and carrots; all very fresh, well cooked or grilled, and hot (not always the case in London!). A good choice of wines at reasonable prices, plus others at decidedly unreasonable prices. A bottle of the NZ Tinpot S/Blanc at £38 and a Merlot Embleme at £25 suited the dishes well. Jugs of tap water were freely available. With 12.5% service it came out, without pudding, at £123 a couple; perhaps a little on the rich side?

Nevine H

05 April 2014  
Food & Drink 4.5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 4.5
Excellent service, welcoming, great atmosphere, comfortable and delicous food, what's not to like! Recommend trying a small appetiser with a drink, we ate a small pork dish (they even sliced the small cornichons – perfect), and smoked aubergine pate with wonderful home made crips – fabulous. Excellent homemade bread. Extensive choice of wines including by the glass and carafe. Charming and attentive service. Starter – amazing creamy haddock with poached egg – just don't order the fish pie as a main as too similar, though equally delicous. We ordered an extra of cabbage with lardons – only complaint is that portion was too small as tasted so good! Well worth a visit if in the vicinity or plan on arriving eary when catching a train or dining after arriving on a train!

Kerim T

17 December 2013  
Food & Drink 4
Service 5
Atmosphere 4
Value 4
Pleasant and helpful staff, good food and value for money
Plum and Spilt Milk serves up very decent fare in a more than pleasant space in the new Great Northern Hotel. The staff are universally warm, helpful and polite and the overall impression is very good. The downsides are that in the evening it can be little dark and so hard to read the menu and also that a lack of soft furnishings can make it a little noisy for anyone who is sensitive to raised voices. For others this constitutes great atmosphere of course !

Rich M

22 June 2013  
Food & Drink 3.5
Service 4
Atmosphere 3.5
Value 4
Plum and Spilt Milk - Railway dining heritage on the right track
So you've heard about the big name chef, who made his name working under Ramsay, opening up in the refurbished grandeur of a once iconic King's Cross hotel. The yesteryear venue name, the appropriately quixotic decor, the confidently egalitarian food and the bar, well, at least a couple of steps up from the Weatherspoons you'd normally find in a location like this. You've heard about it? Which one, because now there's two of the buggers… Next door in the Great Northern Hotel and hot(ish) on the heels of Marcus Wareing's grand St Pancreas dining hall The Gilbert Scott comes Mark Sargeant's Plum and Spilt Milk (an indecipherably odd name unless you're a train spotter – P&SM the oddity obviously, Mark is still fairly common). The name refers to the site's railway heritage, evoked through colour and artfully referenced design rather than by slavish recreation of a buffet car thankfully. And it is a truly, truly scrumptious design. As understatedly elegant as any of the grand dining rooms of the city. A ceiling mounted forest of light dapples elegant cream (or spilt milk) banquettes and warm golds provide a link to classily Deco black lacquered table tops. The little touches are the best. A darling milk bottle top mosaic lines the lofty period staircase up from the decadently deco bar and wall mounted sets of sockets provide handy USB and continental plug charging points over each table. Just don't leave your mobile on the handy shelf above the seating in your rush to get to the platform. The staff handbook also looks like it's taken a leaf out of the Caprice Holdings service bible – sassy, clued up and personable, you get the feeling that they'd remind you of your departure time if you didn't manage to rouse yourself after a tussle with the carnivore's dream that is the short, sweet menu. Starters are trad, light(ish) and often fishy. My thickly and thrillingly creamy smoked haddock soufflé glistened richly under a blanket of cheese sauce in an individual Staub pot bed, a little poached quail's egg perched on top like a candied fruit on a posh chocolate. It certainly gives the Dean Street Town House's version a run for its money. Other than that little piscine pearl, there was potted shrimp, dill cured salmon and delightfully moreish, gravy soaked lamb sweetbreads that we couldn't help but share among the table. It's not exactly ground breaking cuisine, but I don't get the sense that this restaurant is meant to be that. It isn't a light and casual snack before travelling. This is a big meal before you hunker down into your first class seat on the way to Brussels for that meeting. Mains are similarly (and for me agreeably) old-school macho. They've got 3 or 4 hefty meat focussed options, a ‘house’ pie, and a couple of club lounge style fish dishes as well as a ‘grill section’. For the real food nerds, the latter are cooked in (under? over??) a razzy new Inka Grill – a competitor to the Josper Grills that have been springing up in meat heavy kitchens over the last few years Loin of pork was enormous. A genuinely shocking hunk of pig. tasty, but heavy going towards the end and being long and slow cooked to avoid the drying out that could have occurred with a piece this size it was a little bit too one dimensional and, dare I say it, a little bland. Another couple of those Staub dishes filled with fine beans, darling slivers of heritage carrot and a fair spicy apple chutney saw it through though.It was hard however to avoid the food envy watching one fellow diner demolish a soft plate of silken deboned Jacob's Ladder Ribs with accompanying turnip mash and the other plough through a peerless fish pie of buttery richness. Puddings were in the same gentleman's club vein, though thankfully not served in the same Staub pots (they must have an amazing deal with the company that provides them). While a shared Tarte Tatin defeated two at the table, I ploughed on manfully through my chocolate fondant with malted milk creme, succumbing to the food coma only on leaving the restaurant. If you find it difficult to doze off on trains, here's your answer. Despite costing a deal less to dine there, on this showing it's certainly no poor cousin to The Gilbert Scott next door. Sure it's simpler, but in this context that's unequivocally a ‘good thing’. So we've now got a brace of ex-Ramsay chefs cooking up a storm in newly reinvigorated N1. Come on Angela Hartnett, how's about a hat trick?

Jean T

17 June 2013  
Food & Drink 5
Service 4.5
Atmosphere 4.5
Value 5
Fabulous Father's Day Lunch
Initially I chose this restaurant for Father's Day because of its association with Mark Sargeant and I always like to try somewhere new for my husband on his special day! We arrived about half an hour earlier than my daughter and had a drink downstairs where the staff were very friendly and efficient and we were entertained by a very good pianist. The drinks were transferred to our restaurant bill and we made our way upstairs to the delightful dining room. The decor was gorgeous and the lighting was amazing. Our only complaint was that the air conditioning was a little fierce but after our cocktails this was somehow forgotten. The menu covered all the bases and for starters two of us had the ham hock and goose liver terrine which was very tasty and well presented and my smoked haddock soufflé was absolutely sublime. For mains we had the lamb shank hotpot – unctuous lamb in gorgeous gravy served in the ubiquitous Le Cresuet style mini casserole dish; chicken breast, spring greens, onion petals with plum & bacon jam – which was a lovely dish with plenty of flavour and texture and a perfectly cooked rib eye steak. The sides of dauphinoise potato and buttered spinach were hardly needed but all eaten because they were so delicious. Only two deserts were ordered a bread and butter pudding and a Saint Clements tart – both of which were divine. We had a nice Ribera Del Duero which was a good accompaniment and significantly less expensive than many other restaurants. The atmosphere was very laid back and perfect for a Sunday but we will definitely be back to try dinner service and during the week for a business lunch – in fact I have already made a reservation!
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